SJSO hosts free child safety seat installations and inspections

Published 12:00 am Saturday, August 10, 2019

LAPLACE — The St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff’s Office will hold free child passenger safety seat installations and inspections from 9 a.m. to noon August 17 at the Percy Hebert Building, located at 1801 W. Airline Highway in LaPlace.

Parents are encouraged to come with their child and learn about safety seat installation. Deputies who have been certified as “child passenger safety technicians” are available for anyone who has questions about child restraint laws or wants to learn how to properly install a child’s car seat.

A 2017 study published in The Journal of Pediatrics stated that 43 percent of the children who died due to motor-vehicular injuries were unrestrained or improperly restrained at the time of the crash.

The following child passenger safety laws went into affect this month, according to St. James Parish Hospital:

* A child under 2 must be in a rear-facing child safety seat according to the vehicle and child safety seat manufacturer’s instructions until the child reaches the weight or height limit of the safety seat. A child must not turn forward facing until he/she has met both 2 years old and the highest weight or height of the child safety seat.

* A child that is older than 2 years old and has outgrown the rear-facing child safety seats must be restrained in a forward-facing child safety seat with an internal harness until they reach its weight or height limit.

* A child who at least 4 years old and has outgrown the forward-facing safety seats must be restrained by a belt-positioning booster seat secured with a seat belt.

* A child who is at least 9 years old or has outgrown the booster seat can use the car’s adult seat belt if it fits correctly on their body. That means that when the child sits all the way back against the vehicle’s seat, their knees bend over the edge of the seat, the belt fits snugly across their thighs and lower hips and not abdomen and the shoulder strap crosses the center of the child’s chest and not the neck.

* Any children under the age of 13 must be in a rear seat when available.